Sports

Staff picks: Long Beach State’s top-10 games this year

Since the collegiate athletic year has come to an unforeseen premature ending, many Long Beach State athletics games will be left unplayed. However, that won’t stop us from reminiscing over some of our favorite Beach moments throughout the fall and partial spring semesters.

This is the Daily Forty-Niner’s top-10 list of best Long Beach State games of the 2019-20 academic year.


10. Women’s basketball (13-7, 8-8 Big West) 73-67 OT win vs UCR on Jan. 30

To start the list off we saw sophomore guard Justina King heat up at just the right time, scoring 13 of her 18 points in overtime. The Beach tallied 19 steals throughout the defensive slugfest before cleaning up their field goal percentage to 53.8 in overtime, pushing them past a struggling UCR offense.


9. Women’s soccer (4-12-1, 2-5-1 Big West) 2-1 (2OT) win vs USD on Sept. 21

Number nine is the soccer team’s first win of the season. The game-winning goal, scored by junior forward Kayla Cannon, hit the net after over 107 minutes of back and forth action. The game’s first goal, scored by junior forward Mackenzie Magaoay, came after the 76-minute marker, giving this low scoring affair a late breath of life. The Toreros would answer right back, changing the amount of pressure in the game almost instantaneously, but Cannon’s game-winner put the spark to rest to overtime.


8. Men’s basketball (11-21, 6-10 Big West)  65-63 win vs UCR on Feb. 15 

Eighth on the list was an absolute shootout that saw seven lead changes and 14 ties before needing overtime to decide the winner. Sophomore guard Michael Carter III sunk the game-winning shot, securing the first and only back-to-back wins of the year for the Beach. Freshman standout and 2019-20 Big West Best Defensive Player Joshua Morgan had his highest-scoring game of his career with 17.


7. Men’s water polo (18-12, 2-3 Gold Coast) 21-20 (2OT) win vs LMU on Nov. 14 

A high scoring contest fought against fellow Los Angeles County school places at number seven. Although it always feels great to beat a local team, taking down a ranked opponent makes it even better. Senior attacker Austin Stewart’s fifth goal of the game put away No. 13 Loyola Marymount for good, giving No. 8 Long Beach its 15th win of the season, sparking a four-game win-streak down the stretch.

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Long Beach State redshirt Junior Curtis Casper celebrates a Beach goal.

Austin Brumblay/Daily Forty-Niner


6. Men’s volleyball (10-1, 0-0 Big West) 3-2 win vs UCLA on Feb. 29

Number six is a revenge game against yet another local LA team. After UCLA came to the Walter Pyramid and handed Long Beach its first and only loss of the season on Feb. 1, the Beach traveled to UCLA and gave the No.12 Bruins their third home loss of the year. Beach freshman Mason Briggs was undoubtedly a difference maker, finishing the game with 15 saves en route to winning Big West Co-Freshman of the Year by season’s end.

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Long Beach State freshman libero Mason Briggs raises his fists in the air after a point scored by the Beach.

Cain Hernandez/Daily Forty-Niner


5. Hailey Harward passes Misty May-Treanor on Sept. 14 for sixth-place on the all-time dig list.

Checking in at number five is senior libero Hailey Harward’s historic performance against No. 11 Florida in Gainesville. The game was a back-and-forth affair, with the two teams heading into the final set tied 2-2. While the Gators were able to stave off the upset bid winning the final frame 19-17, Harward moved into sixth place on the all-time digs record list, passing CSULB Hall of Famer and decorated Olympian, as well as family friend and mentor, Misty May-Treanor. The two-time All-Big West First-Team recipient ended her career at Long Beach State with 1602 digs, good for third all-time, as well as a fan favorite with her passion for the game on full display.

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Long Beach State senior libero Hailey Harward digs the ball against UCSB Friday, Nov. 15.

Austin Brumblay/Daily Forty-Niner


4. Men’s basketball (11-21, 6-10 Big West)  80-73 OT win vs Cal Poly on March 5 

A conference thriller checks in at number four on the list with the Beach playing on senior night. Lone senior guard Jordan Griffin had a memorable send-off, tallying a season-high 18 points in his last home game at the Walter Pyramid. To put a cherry on top, the overtime victory secured a Big West Tournament berth, clinching the eighth seed in the finals days of the season.


3. Dirtbags (10-5, 0-0 Big West)  3-2 win vs Cal on Feb. 14 

Third on the list is the Dirtbags’ home-opener win versus Cal, sealed by redshirt senior first baseman Jacob Hughey’s walk-off RBI-single down the third-base line. The nailbiter of a contest lasted 13 innings, with junior Adam Seminaris striking out an impressive 11 batters and giving up zero earned runs in six innings pitched. The victory also happened to take place on Valentine’s Day; what more could you love about that?


2. Junior long jumper Jason Smith on Feb. 15 breaks Long Beach State record 

The second-place finisher on our list is far more accustomed to placing first in the record books. Redshirt junior jumper Jason Smith broke the school record for the long jump at the Don Kirby Elite in Albuquerque, New Mexico, on Feb 15. Smith boasted a leap of 25-10.25 meters in the men’s long jump at the contest, passing Kamonie Briggs’ previous CSULB record of 25-07.25 which Smith had tied just two weeks before. 

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Long Beach State redshirt Junior Curtis Casper celebrates a Beach goal.

Long Beach State Athletics


1. Women’s softball (13-12, 0-0 Big West) 5-4 win vs No. 2 Oklahoma on Feb. 15

Of course, our list would not be complete without the huge upset win pulled off by the Long Beach State softball team sitting at the top spot. The Beach handed No. 2 Oklahoma its first and only loss of the shortened season behind junior Alyssa Gonzalez’s two-RBI double bouncing off the right-field wall to walk-off the nation’s second-best team. Check out the video of the magic below. 


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